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Mumbai

Updated on: Saturday, October 16, 2021, 07:36 AM IST

Mumbai | FPJ Legal: Husband and mother-in-law acquitted in 29-year-old dowry death case

Representative Photo |

Representative Photo |

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A sessions court on Monday acquitted a husband and the mother-in-law of a woman in a dowry death case of 1992, finding that though the death took place within seven years of marriage, the father of the deceased, who had lodged the complaint, being dead and many witnesses not traceable, there was no evidence against the accused.

The case had been delayed as the mother and son had gone absconding after securing bail and had come to be arrested only recently.

The recitals of the FIR were not corroborated by the complainant, the court said in its judgment, adding that records show that the informant is dead and some of the witnesses are not traced out. The court said it is not disputed that Ayeshabi, married to Zakir Sayyed in 1990, had died within seven years of marriage, but that there is no evidence to show that soon before death she was subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative in connection with any demand of dowry. The evidence on record does not show that she died by suicide because of the harassment of her husband and mother-in-law, it said.

A dying declaration of the Ayeshabi had been recorded by the executive magistrate. Additional Sessions Judge Jayshri R. Pulate said in her order that the dying declaration is not tendered before the court. “Therefore there is absolutely no evidence..,” the court said.

A neighbour of the Sayyed’s had deposed as a witness but had turned hostile during the trial. In his statement to the police in 1992, he had said that Ayeshabi used to be harassed and assaulted over dowry and household work, but in court he had denied that he had stated so to the police.

As per the complaint filed by Ayeshabi’s father Dadamiya, a Gujarat resident, Ayeshabi had complained to him of mental and physical harassment for dowry by Sayyed and her mother-in-law Banubi Sayyed. He had parted with cash, jewellery, and clothes due to it. At one point the mother-and-son duo, he said, had assured in presence of community members that they would stop ill-treating his daughter. On April 28, 1992, he said he got a telegram message from his son-in-law that his daughter had suffered burns and was hospitalized in Sion Hospital. He had come to Mumbai the very next day but was informed that she died. When he was at the hospital, the neighbours of the household informed him that the duo used to beat and harass his daughter. He had then filed an abetment of suicide, cruelty, and dowry death complaint against the two.

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Published on: Saturday, October 16, 2021, 07:36 AM IST
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